Have a safe and lovely Christmas, everyone!
And now, the only Christmas song worth a damn:
Some random trivia about “Fairytale of New York”:
– Kirsty MacColl was not supposed to sing on the track. She was dating Pogues’ producer Steve Lillywhite at the time, and was asked to fill in at the recording sessions until the final vocal track could be laid down by Pogues’ bassist Cait O’Riordan. Everyone liked Kirsty’s vocals so much that her version was kept.
– “Fairytale of New York” is (supposedly) the favorite Christmas song of Cliff Richard, Matt Dillon, Dermot O’Leary, Karen Osborne, Pete Doherty, Peter Zimmerman, Ricky Olarenshaw, Carl Barat, Bob Geldof, Liam Neeson, Colin Firth, Chris Moyles, Tim Hames, Sue Johnstone, Chris Martin, and The Office creators Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant.
– Speaking of Matt Dillion, he plays the arresting officer in the video.
– Shane McGowan cannot play piano, so band member James Fearnley (reluctantly) put on McGowan’s rings and jacket for the close-ups of the hands laying piano.
– The New York Police Department does not have a choir; they do, however, have a Pipes and Drums unit. They are featured in the video.
– Not every member of the Pipes and Drums band knew “Galway Bay”, so the song they’re actually singing is the “Mickey Mouse Club Theme”.
– Record labels in the UK have a tradition of releasing “Christmas singles”, and they compete amongst themselves for the #1 spot at Christmas. The year “Fairytale” was released, the single was kept out of the #1 spot by the Pet Shop Boys’ cover of “Always on My Mind”, which led MacGowan to comment that “[w]e were beaten by two queens and a drum machine.”